How to Format the Date in PowerPoint

By Carol Finch

Learn how to find date formats in PowerPoint and how to add a date to a slide or to the presentation's footer and how to make sure date updates automatically.

PowerPoint's default date and time formats allow you to choose a layout when you insert a date in the main body of a slide or in its footer. After you've chosen the type of date you want to use, you can format its text and appearance. If you're working in the footer, you can also change the date's position on the slide.

Add a Date to a Slide

Step 1

Click on the place in the slide where you want to insert the date. Select the Insert tab and then Date & Time.

Step 2

Choose a date format and a language.

When the Date and Time dialog box opens, scroll through the list to see available date and date and time formats. Click on one you want to use. If you have enabled additional foreign languages in PowerPoint, choose a language from the Language drop-down menu and an option from the Calendar Type drop-down menu, if available.

Tip

To add different languages and associated calendar types to dates in PowerPoint, select the File tab and then Options. Go to Language and select an option from the Add Additional Editing Languages drop-down menu. Select Add and then OK. You'll be prompted to shut down MSOffice programs before PowerPoint adds the language.

By default, PowerPoint inserts a fixed date that will not change unless you edit it. To make the date update whenever you open the presentation or print it, check the box next to Update Automatically. Select OK to apply the changes.

Tip

  • Make sure to click on the slide before you select Date and Time. If youdon't specify a location for the date, PowerPoint assumes you want toplace it in the slide's footer and opens the Header and Footer menu.
  • To set a date format as a default for future use, select Default in the Date and Time menu.

Add a Date to the Footer

Step 1

Select Header & Footer to open the setup menu.

Open the Insert tab and select Header & Footer.

Step 2

Select Date and Time and choose a format.

Check the Date and time box. Click the Update Automatically radial button to create a date that updates when you open or print the presentation in the future. Choose a format from the drop-down menu and change the options in Language and Calendar Type if necessary. To use a fixed date, select Fixed and enter the format you want to use in the box.

To stop the date showing on the presentation's title slide, check the Don't show on title slide box. Select Apply to add the date to the current slide; select Apply to All to display it on all slides. Apply to All will not display the date on the title slide if you've disabled this setting.

Tip

  • You can also add a date and time to a presentation's handouts from the Header and Footer tool. Select the Notes and Handouts tab and follow the steps to add a date.
  • PowerPoint inserts the current day's date by default. To change to a different date, insert the date, select it and change the day, month or year.

Customize the Date

Use Font tools to customize the date's design. If you've added a date to a footer, you can also change its placement on the slide.

Step 1

Use font tools to format the date's text style.

Select the date in the slide or double-click the footer to enable the text box before selecting the text. Open the Home tab and use the Font tools to change the font, color and size of the text. You can also add bold, italics or an underline.

Tip

To add additional effects to the date, select it and open the Format tab. Use the options in the Shape Styles and WordArt Styles areas to add and format effects.

Step 2

To move the date in the footer area or to place it elsewhere on the slide, edit its placement in the presentation's slide master. If you change the position on a regular slide, it will only move on that slide; editing the slide master applies the change to all slides.

Select Slide Master to open the master list.

Select the View tab and then Slide Master.

Select the first slide in the master list.

Select the first slide in the master list to open it in the main screen.

Drag the date box to its new location.

Select the date box in the footer area. Hold the mouse over one of its lines until it turns into a cross. Drag the date box to its new location and release it.